Dean Wilkerson assumes Texas League for Nursing leadership

Sharon Wilkerson, Ph.D., RN, CNE, ANEF, dean of the Texas A&M Health Science Center (TAMHSC) College of Nursing, was recently appointed president of the Texas League for Nursing.

Sharon Wilkerson

Sharon A. Wilkerson, Ph.D., RN, CNE, ANEF

The Texas League for Nursing is a state-based constituent league of nurse educators supporting the mission of the National League for Nursing (NLN). NLN is the premier organization for nurse faculty and leaders in nursing education offering faculty development, networking opportunities, testing services, nursing research grants, and public policy initiatives to its 31,000 individual and 1,200 institutional members.

The impetus for the Texas-based league came from nurse educators in Texas who want to further the NLN mission at the state level. In addition to strengthening the relationship of Texas nurse educators to the NLN, a key goal of the Texas League for Nursing is to provide an avenue for collaboration with one another, nurses in the state, and other professional groups and associations to promote excellence in nursing and nursing education at the local and national levels.

Members also hope to:

  • Facilitate transfer from LPN to master’s degree programs
  • Raise the profile of nursing and nurse educators in legislative circles in the state
  • Establish mentoring programs for clinicians who transition to academic roles and conduct research on faculty mentoring
  • Increase recruitment of advanced degree nurses for faculty positions
  • Create scholarship opportunities for Ph.D. candidates
  • Create opportunities for retiring faculty to teach online
  • Create better support systems for faculty
  • Coordinate needs of nurses in urban and rural settings
  • Devise and implement evidence-based teaching strategies
  • Develop a vision of nursing as a lifelong commitment to learning and education

A 30-year veteran in undergraduate and graduate nursing education, Dr. Wilkerson was appointed founding dean of the TAMHSC-College of Nursing in 2008. During her time with the college, Dr. Wilkerson successfully developed the college’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.) programs, Master of Science (M.S.N.) in nursing education and is working toward further graduate degrees to be offered in the near future. Under her leadership, the college boasts a 100 percent pass rate on the national licensing exam, significant given the national pass rate is 90.22 percent for all first time test takers.

In addition to her new role with Texas League for Nursing, Dr. Wilkerson also serves on committees and boards at the state and national level. She is president-elect of the Texas Organization of Baccalaureate and Graduate Nursing Educators, and currently serves on the nominating committee for the American Association of Colleges of Nursing.

Members of the Texas League for Nursing executive team include: president-elect, Vivian Lilly, Ph.D., MBA, RN, CNE, dean, Galen College of Nursing, San Antonio, TX; secretary; Mary Ellen Viancourt, M.S.N., RN, clinical instructor, University of Texas Arlington College of Nursing; and treasurer, Alyce Ashcraft, Ph.D., RN, CNE, ANEF, associate dean for research, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center School of Nursing, Lubbock, TX.

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